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GOOGLE LIMITS ACCESS TO AIRFARE DATA, RISKING ANTITRUST CONCERNS

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IN 2010, WHEN Google paid $700 million to acquire airline-data company ITA Software, the Department of Justice scrutinized the deal for antitrust issues. The deal was ultimately approved, but one condition of the approval required Google to allow others to access the data for five years. Now, seven years later, Google is cutting off access to ITA data for some companies that rely on it. This week Google announced it would cancel QPX Express, an airline-data service it has offered to small businesses and startups since 2014. The news immediately prompted criticism from entrepreneurs and antitrust watchdogs, who see it as further proof of Google parent company Alphabet’s outsized power.
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